Letter: Too many trespassers flout North Dakota's current law
David Lunde has the right idea about how to resolve the issues generated with SB 2225 ("Don't make hiking, birdwatching in North Dakota a crime," letter, Page A4, Feb. 11).
He wants to "keep the 'Welcome' signs out."
What he gets wrong is that the "wide open spaces" are not everyone's home.
Have heard a number of opponents to SB 2225 lament "why can't you just post your land?" SB 2225 seeks to close a loophole that criminals use to escape prosecution when trespassing, as they allege the land was not posted properly. Often it is the landowner's word against the criminal's—and sadly, sometimes it is the landowner in a chest-to-chest "discussion" with someone who argues they have every right to be where they are, as the land was not posted with "correct signage."
There has been much speculation on what the present law stipulates as correct posting. I suggest the armchair experts take a minute to read the law specific to posting, which is found under ND Century Code Chapter 20.1-01-17.
No signature and no phone number required; only a legible name. Still going to need to work a bit to find the landowner/contact info.
The real point that is being ignored is that private property rights are not being respected. The argument that we should not limit access to the great outdoors is overly dramatic. Access remains; you just need to ask first. Or as Lunde so clearly points out, look for the "Welcome" signs.